Succour may have come the way of investors of C&I Leasing Plc, as the firm has assured shareholders of dividend payment at the end current financial year.
The company has not paid dividend for the past years.
The Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer, Andrew Otike-Odibi, at the ‘Facts Behind the Figures’ presentation at the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE), on Tuesday, explained that the company’s focus on growing the business affected dividend.
However, he said C&I Leasing is currently strong to declare dividend from the business, and even plans to expand its marine activities to Ghana.
He said: “We appreciate the fact that the business has not paid dividend in the past two years.
Last year, we were all very expectant for that to happen but it did not happen.
One of the things we did last year was to set aside money to grow the business. It did not make sense for us to raise fresh capital and then begin to pay dividend.
“We needed to plough back funds as much as possible.
But that said and done, our plan is to pay dividend by the end of this financial year. The business is stronger now, and cash flows are better.
Shareholders have been more than magnanimous because with the patience they have exercised so far, we will definitely want to reward them with dividend and given the way our share price is moving, they will also enjoy capital appreciation,” he said.
Speaking on the company’s performance for the half year ended June 30, 2018, Otike-Odibi said gross earnings of N12.8billion was recorded, showing an increase of 11 per cent above the same period in 2017.
He explained that the gross income was driven by growth in the company’s rental income on the back of volume increase in its fleet and marine business.
“Profit after tax of N682.2million, up 17.6 per cent, was achieved through a combination of cost reduction initiatives and optimal utilisation of assets.
We successfully raised a N7billion bond, the largest ever raised in the company. The funds will be used for debt refinancing and business expansion,” he said.
C&I Leasing also projected a turnover of N26.319billion at the end of 2018, N30.268 billion in 2019, N36.321 billion in 2020, and N45.401billion in 2011. Profit after tax is projected at N1.522billion in 2018, N1.750billion in 2019, N2.1billion in 2020, and N2.625billion in 2021.